II. THE STANDARD


I. Object ID categories

The categories of information that constitute Object ID have been identified by a combination of international questionnaire surveys, roundtable meetings of specialists in the six key communities, consultation with individual experts, and results of discussions at conferences, seminars, and workshops. In order to be included in Object ID, a category has had to be approved by over 75 percent of respondents in each of the six communities, although in general the percentages are much higher.

PHOTOGRAPHS
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

83% 96% 93% 89% 94% 91%

Photographs are of vital importance in identifying and recovering stolen objects. In addition to overall views, close-ups of inscription, markings, damage, and repairs should be taken (see Distinguishing Features).

Photographs are of vital importance in identifying and recovering stolen objects. In addition to overall views, close-ups of inscriptions, markings, and any damage and repairs can be of critical importance.
TYPE OF OBJECT
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

96% 96% 95% 91% 100% 100%

Type of Object is a term or short descriptive phrase that describes the object (e.g., mask, warrior ear ornament). This category combines two of the categories included in the 1995-96 questionnaire survey: Object Type (a broad term that can be used to categorize an object, e.g., sculpture) and Object Name (a term used to identify the form and type of an object, e.g., cameo, relief, netsuke). Many of those consulted thought that there would be confusion between Object Type and Object Name, and between Object Name and Title (see below). However, when implementing Object ID on an automated system it is advisable to be able to retrieve this information at a minimum of two levels (for example, Level 1: pottery, Level 2: portrait head jar).

MEASUREMENTS
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

97% 89% 98% 97% 100% 96%

The size and/or weight of an object, including the unit of measurement (e.g., 30.5 cm by 30.5 cm by 76 cm).

MATERIALS & TECHNIQUES
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

98% 81% 97% 97% 100% 98%

The materials, manufacturing techniques, processes, or methods used to create an object.

INSCRIPTIONS & MARKINGS
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

89% 96% 97% 97% 100% 89%

Identifying markings or inscriptions found on, or applied to, the object (e.g., signature, dedication, title, maker's marks, purity marks, property marks).

DATE OR PERIOD
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

93% 85% 96% 96% 92% 89%

An indication of the age of the object. This can be a date or date range (e.g., 1872, 1527-1580) or a cultural period (e.g., Late Bronze Age).

MAKER
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

83% 87% 95% 96% 100% 91%

The name of the maker of an object. This may be a known individual (e.g., Thomas Tompion), a company (e.g., Tiffany), or a cultural group (e.g., Hopi).

SUBJECT
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

84% 94% 85% 94% 90% 93%

That which is pictured in, or represented by, the object (e.g., landscape, battle, woman holding child).

TITLE
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

95% 94% 90% 97% 100% 89%

The title assigned to an object, either at the time of its creation or at a later date (e.g., The Scream).

DISTINGUISHING FEATURES
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

97% 95% 88% 96% * 98%

Any features on the object that could uniquely identify it (e.g., damage, repairs, or defects introduced in the manufacturing process).

* This question was not included in the survey of art insurance specialists.

DESCRIPTION
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

81% 94% 79% 94% 98% 93%

A short textual description of the object created using information from the above categories. It can include any additional information that helps to identify the object (e.g., color and shape of the object, where the object was made).

II. Recommended additional categories

Five of the categories of information not selected for Object ID because there was no clear consensus in favor of their inclusion were, however, regarded as being important by a large majority of respondents in at least four of the six communities surveyed. It is recommended that those developing automated documentation systems consider including these categories.

OBJECT ID NUMBER
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

96% 89% 72% 72% 76% 93%

A numeric or alphanumeric identifier, as used in many museums (sometimes applied to the object itself).

RELATED WRITTEN MATERIAL
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

70% 68% 82% 93% 67% 84%

References, including citations, to other written material related to an object (e.g., published catalogues, articles, condition reports).

PLACE OF ORIGIN/DISCOVERY
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

83% 74% 73% 81% 65% 89%

The place from which an object originated and/or the location at which it was discovered (e.g., the place it was made, or the archaeological site at which it was discovered).

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED OBJECTS
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

68% 79% 73% 83% 79% 82%

An indication that an object is related to a number of others (e.g., one of a pair, part of a dinner service).

DATE DOCUMENTED
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

79% 66% 79% 87% 73% 80%

The date on which the description of the object was made.

III. Categories on which no consensus exists

The seven categories listed below were those on which there was the lowest level of agreement. The decision whether to include any of these categories in a documentation system will depend on the specific needs of the individual organization.

CONDITION OF OBJECT
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

83% 66% 74% 85% 73% 82%

A classification of an object's general physical condition using either single-word descriptors (e.g., excellent, good, fair, poor) or a free-text narrative assessing the physical condition of the object in greater detail (e.g., prior repairs, damaged areas).

CUSTODIAN OF OBJECT
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

83% 57% 62% 78% 68% 96%

The name of the individual, organization, or institution that has custody of the object (or, in the case of a stolen object, had custody until the time of its theft).

RECORDER'S NAME
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

69% 60% 64% 81% 63% 76%

The name of the person who documented the object.

NORMAL LOCATION OF OBJECT
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

87% 66% 64% 68% 51% 82%

The geographic location (e.g., postal address) of the object or, in the case of a stolen object, its former location. This might also include the location of the object within the property or institution (e.g., the name of the room, gallery, store).

ESTIMATED VALUE
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

53% 66% 56% 80% 59% 93%

The current estimated value of the object.

LEGAL STATUS OF OBJECT
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

69% 62% 52% 64% 61% 91%

There is a distinction between the ownership of the object and its legal status as defined by the national regulations of some countries (e.g., a privately owned object may also be registered as a "national treasure").

ACQUISITION
Cultural
Heritage
Law
Enforcement
Art Trade Appraisers Insurance Customs

78% 47% 48% 59% 55% 84%

The means by which an object was acquired, the date at which it was acquired, and the price paid.


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Protecting Cultural Objects in the Global Information Society — Copyright 1997 The J. Paul Getty Trust